120 Minutes

Dan McCloskey, November 12, 2013

It took about 120 minutes after the birth of my son for me to finally get around to calling the family to announce his arrival. Seems odd, doesn't it?

Well, it's a long story.

The short version is it took almost that long for my wife to regain full consciousness after some additional post-C section pain relievers were administered, and I still needed her stamp of approval on our name decision.

My good friend and home brew partner works in research at the hospital where the little guy was born. He's going to cure cancer.

My friend, not my son. That's not to say I don't have a great deal of confidence that my son will do great things in life. It's just that I don't want to burden him with such lofty expectations. At least, not yet.

My future-cancer-curing friend was the first to visit us in the hospital.  Plans were made for he and his wife to come see the baby once we returned home. The tradition of passing out cigars was discussed.

Neither of us had any interest in that.

So, while we acknowledged that usually it's the new dad who hands out cigars to his friends, it was decided my pal would try to get his hands on some Dogfish 120 Minute IPA to mark the occasion.

I'd yet to try Dogfish 120 Minute at the time, and although I would normally be skeptical he'd come through because of its limited availability -- as I am about his ability to cure cancer -- I had my hopes up for some reason.

Our drive home from the hospital felt like 120 minutes, even though it only lasted about 20. Of course, our baby cried the moment he left the comforts of the maternity ward and was first introduced to November in New England. Which seems funny to us now because, at just under two years old, his favorite word to repeat incessantly is "outside." When we're inside, of course.

The drive home didn't provide much relief. The wife sat next to him in the back to try and calm him, while the flowers and balloons that were delivered to our room sat up front with me.

It didn't take long for those balloons to become a distraction. And let me warn future first-time fathers: the drive home from the hospital with your two-, three- or four-day old will be the most defensive you've ever driven in your life. If you're prone to irrational thoughts about others' lack of concern for the safety of innocent children they're not even aware of, let me tell you you're going to be stressed.

But, oh yeah...the balloons. I had to pull over to move them to the trunk. You can imagine what happened next. Try to picture a somewhat nervous new father trying to quickly close the trunk on several balloons trying their damnedest to escape. Well, one of them did.

I didn't have to tell my wife about the helium-filled runaway, but I did. She cried. We laughed about the fact that she cried a couple days later, but that didn't alleviate my guilt in the moment.

Anyway, a week or so later, said friend and his wife showed up at our door with two bottles of the "holy grail for hopheads." Perhaps he will cure cancer, after all.

Dogfish Head 120 Minute IPA

Appearance: 3.75/5
Copper-colored with a lively head and decent retention.

Smell: 3.5/5
More than a little boozy, to be honest, and less hoppy than expected.

Taste: 4/5
Huge maltiness upfront masks the hop bitterness, at first. Hoppiness comes through a little later than expected, but still not overwhelming. Really well balanced.

Mouthfeel: 3.5/5
A little harsh, but warming. Kind of liquory.

Overall: 3.75/5